Speaking to Nick Ferrari At Breakfast, the Liberal Democrat leader says he was unaware of abuse claims against the former MP until they were revealed to the Commons in 2012.
Simon Danczuk, current MP in Rochdale where Sir Cyril served, has written an explosive book detailing allegations against the former Liberal MP. Newspaper front pages this morning insisted Mr Clegg must have known about the claims.
But the Deputy Prime Minister told LBC: “The suggestion that I had known any of this, I would have carried on regardless is absurd.
“These are montrous things that appear to have happened and they need to be looked into by the police.”
Mr Clegg said that as soon as Simon Danczuk made the claims in the House of Commons the Party began investigating.
“The Whips’ office in my Party went and spoke to every single current member of the House of Lords and current member of the House of Commons who was around at the time of Cyril Smith and said ‘did you know anything?’ No-one said they did,” Mr Clegg said.
“We even scoured what little documentation there is from that time but remember, as I keep saying, the Party was formed in 1989. Many, many if not most of these events are alleged to have taken place before the Party was formed. There is simply no documentation.”
The Deputy Prime Minister – and father of two young boys – also emphasised that he was only 12 years old at the time the incidents are alleged to have taken place and was outraged at suggestions he could have been aware of them before they became public.
“Do you really think I would have praised Cyril Smith when he died if I even had an inkling of the monstrous things he is alleged to have been doing? It is absurd to suggest that I would have done otherwise.
“I know that people say ‘you must know something’ I can only tell you what I did and didn’t know, I’m not going to start inventing that I knew things that I didn’t know.
“A lot of these things took place many, many, many years ago, many of them actually stretching way back to before I was around, before my Party was around.
“I now read and I heard in late 2012 what Simon Danczuk has said, they’re very serious. It is repulsive, it is repugnant the actions of this man, they need to be looked at, they are of a criminal nature and they need to be looked at by the police.”
However speaking on LBC following this week’s Call Clegg Mr Danczuk was sceptical of the Deputy Prime Minister’s assertions.
“I think it is inconceivable that the leader of the Liberal Democrats would not have heard these rumours. You’ve got to bear in mind, I’ve been researching this issue, we had a Liberal leader of the council in Rochdale back in the ’60s knowing about these allegations.”